Financial Winners And Losers From Galarraga's Imperfect Game
CNBC Sports Business Reporter
As I’m sure you know by now, Detroit Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga lost his perfect gamelast night when first base umpire Jim Joyce called the 27th batter — Jason Donald — safe at first base. It’s not just a bad call, the whole thing has financial ramifications.
Lumber Liquidators: The company just happened to be the sponsor on the rotating signage behind home plate as Galarraga threw the pitch to Donald. Who knows how many times the video has been watched since last night, but it has to be in the millions now. And there’s Lumber Liquidators sign saying “Lumber Liquidators: HARDWOOD FLOORS FOR LESS!” Even better is the simple number 1-800-Hardwood, which is easy to see. As of 11 a.m. ET, shares of Lumber Liquidators were up more than 1.8 percent.
Twitter: If this moment happened five years ago, I would have never seen it live. I was eating dinner, heard Ken Griffey Jr. had retired, went to Twitter and saw from my feed that Galarraga was entering the ninth with perfect game. Twitter has established itself as the destination for finding out what, in the world, is going on right now and that’s perfect for the sports fan. That includes moments like this and moments when people on your Twitter feed inform you of a blowout in a game and you don’t even bother turning it on. In the past, you had to come to the game, now the game comes to you.
MLB Network: I’m not a normal viewer of the Major League Baseball Network, but that’s the new place I’m going for live look-ins of baseball games. After the Tigers-Indians game ended, I stayed there for another 30 minutes, sampling more of what they had to offer.
Armando Galarraga: Unless MLB issues a stunning reversal, Galarraga will not have the 21st perfect game in baseball history. Because of that Galarraga, who will make $400,000 this year, lost between $20,000 and $25,000 in potential earnings from signing “perfect game” items over the next six months, according to Bobby Mintz, vice president of operations for memorabilia company Tri Star Productions. Mintz said that if Galarraga — who has a 20-18 career record — didn’t develop into a good pitcher, he’d still be guaranteed about $5,000 a year in signatures from being part of the “Perfect Game” club. That’s $175,000 over the next 35 years and $200,000 total.
Jim Joyce: Although he gracefully handled his most horrible career moment, Joyce’s career will always be defined by this. There’s no upside, not unless — as my Twitter buddy Andy MacMiller suggested — he wants to do a “Wanna Get Away” spot for Southwest Airlines.
Detroit Tigers: With the Marlins selling tickets to Roy Halladay’s perfect game, the Tigers could have used the extra cash to sell commemorative tickets to this game.
Major League Baseball: It’s going to be hard for MLB to win this one either way. If commissioner Bud Selig does the impossible, reverses the call and gives Galarraga the perfect game, traditionalists will yell and scream. If Selig decides it’s finally time for instant replay, most hard-core baseball fans will yell and scream. And if nothing is done, then baseball is going to faulted for doing nothing.
Harris Corporation: The company provides the hardware, software and services that enables the NFL to review its calls would likely be the beneficiary if baseball decides it wants to review calls more extensively. As of 11 a.m., shares of the company’s stock were down 0.4 percent.
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